San Francisco to Consider Decriminalizing Prostitution

Looks like San Francisco is furthering their slide.

San Francisco to Consider Decriminalizing Prostitution
Sunday , July 20, 2008

A measure that aims to keep prostitutes from facing criminal charges has qualified for the November ballot in San Francisco.

The measure, which qualified Friday, would bar authorities from spending money to investigate or prosecute prostitutes for engaging in prostitution.

Full Story

Another, more lengthy article:

San Fran’s next step: Legalized prostitution?

Caution sarcasm alert:

Why not? They have already made every immoral act legal and something to be desired.

OK end of alert.

Nothing San Francisco does anymore surprises me.

I read this today in our local paper. I am sorry Calf, but I don’t see a lot of good (except from maybe San Diego), coming out of your state. A lot of what goes on in SFO makes me sick!

I know there’s a lot of good folks out there, so please don’t take offense…

Why should anyone go to jail for prostitution? There is no physical harm involved between two or more parties consenting parties. By decriminalizing, innocent (but morally wrong) offenders will have more of an oppurtunity for rehabilitation instead of jail time.

And in a town with a high rate of STD’s or worse and your husband or wife comes home after a “fun” not illegal night and gives the disease to you HOW IS NO ONE PHYSICALLY HARMED?

Those ‘consenting’ prostitutes are held hostage by pimps. Over 90% of them were sexually abused as children. They come from broken homes. They need our love, not our indifference.

Tell me what exactly is ‘innocent’ about someone breaking a law?:shrug:

And in a town with a high rate of STD’s or worse and your husband or wife comes home after a “fun” not illegal night and gives the disease to you HOW IS NO ONE PHYSICALLY HARMED?

An STD is an infection, not a bruise, broken body part, or any reminder of brutal contact. The person who pays for the prostitute knows the risks; if they still want to participate in dirty activity, it is under their own free will.

Those ‘consenting’ prostitutes are held hostage by pimps. Over 90% of them were sexually abused as children. They come from broken homes. They need our love, not our indifference.

Tell me what exactly is ‘innocent’ about someone breaking a law?

They sure do need our love, but what exactly does illegalization do?

My mistake on the ‘innocent’ – I meant ‘victimless’

I am not sure this ballot measure will pass. The folks backing it tried once before to get it before the voters, but couldn’t get enough signatures. And with the mayor and the DA strongly against its passage, I suspect the initiative will not get enough votes.

That said…

[quote=WND article]District Attorney Harris dodged the measure’s thinly veiled implication of racism in explaining why the funds and program are valuable. The ballot measure’s changes “would make it very challenging to investigate and prosecute human trafficking,” she told the Chronicle. “We need to use police resources to investigate where there is a suspicion that women and children, in particular immigrants, are being exploited.”

I am puzzled by Ms. Harris’ claim. Wouldn’t it be easier for women exploited by human trafficking to seek help if they didn’t fear the police?

[quote=WND article]The second program targeted by the measure is San Francisco’s First Offender Prostitution Program, which allows men arrested for soliciting a prostitute to pay $1,000 fine and attend a class on prostitution in exchange for having the misdemeanor charge against them dropped. In April, an audit by the U.S. Department of Justice found that men who participated in the program were 30 percent less likely to be arrested for soliciting a prostitute than men who did not.

I am not so sure about that study (anyone have a link to it?) - I wonder if it just makes men more cautious, for example, looking for pros in Oakland rather than in San Francisco.

Giving their customers a slap on the wrist, while coming done hard on prostitutes, doesn’t seem very just.

Illegalization is meant to stop the action. Making it legal does no one any good.

Wrong again, there are two victims. Both the prostitute and customer. I’m shocked you cannot see this fact.

Like many cities, prostitution (especially escorting) has long been considered a grey area in the Bay Area. I will say though, that escorts are generally treated extremely well by their employers (who are NOT stereotypical ‘pimps’ in the vast majority of cases, and treated amazingly well by their clients.

Very often, clients really want ‘informal psychotherapy’ rather than sex, and insist upon paying far, far more than the given rate - just for say, discussing their problematic marriages, or even just watching cartoons and cracking jokes (both of these situations, like several other scenarios, completely clad and chaste, I should add)! I’m not kidding! And close care is given to health concerns, both for the professional and the client.

I’d be more interested in this proposition if mandatory healthcare was included - that would indeed be of benefit to all concerned. Otherwise, i can only shrug. Name me one place, time or situation where there isn’t any prostitution! You cannot. But it is within our ability to minimize abuses, disease, and essential slavery, and perhaps we should start there…and perhaps move towards a life where such work is no longer in demand.

Actually, making it legal does society more good than harm. One, it cuts down on venereal diseases, as prostitutes have to check in for medical examinations. And two, if you make prostitutes apply for licences for a set fee, that is revenue entering the system.

The first case of legalized prostitution occured in 1864, during the Union occupation of Nashville. Of course, with thousands of soldiers being stations at a vital city and travel hub, countless “ladies of ill repute” set up shop. The Union general (whose name slips me right now) legalized the practice, cut VD down substantially amongst his troops, and acquired five dollars each to maintain a hospital for inhibited soldiers.

I severely disagree with the practice, but as this country is technically capitalist, it is just another venue in which to maximize profits.

Exactly how does society benefit by using it’s unloved, unwanted and abused people for individual sexual gratification?

As a society are we learning compassion? Are we learning the value of human life?

Since you think we need more venues to maximize profits why don’t we set up gladiatoral games again? I mean, they were popular once. Money was generated. And we could use prisoners thus killing two birds with one stone!

Yes what a lovely society we could be!:rolleyes:

If you are speaking of HIV – consider somebody getting cancer from smoking. Are we going to outlaw the sale of tobacco? No!

If these adults want to choose this way, then is it mine or your business to stop them? We should educate them about the consequences of their actions, but send them to prison or fine them?

Freedom (as we have it in the USA) is the pursuit of happiness and pleasure, etc. without infringing on others’ lives. Anything that goes against this should be questioned, discussed, and hopefully modified.

I’m speaking from a legal perspective – not a moral one. Should the two go hand in hand? Yes, in the cases of murder (abortion), stealing, etc.

In conclusion, people are going to do it anyway, and this is a sad reality we have to accept. The greatest prevention is education.

They are just totally losing it there, aren’t they? totally missing the boat.

I pity the civic leadership in San Francisco. It’s a wonderful and beautiful place, I understand, but it’s being made less and less so.

What do we do with the infected prostitute? Stamp “expired” on her forehead and throw her away? Making money off people this way is never moral, no matter how profitable it may be.

Of course from a moral point of view this is disgusting but what I would like to know is how the City has the legal right to decriminalize it? Isn’t that a State matter?

But when a law or, in this case, Proposition (which I just realized the irony of the term :blush: ), goes against God’s Natural Law, we have the right and duty to oppose and ignore the law or Proposition. It also renders it invalid and unjust.

Like I said, I denounce sexual improprieties, but in the pragmatic view- it is happening anyhow. Better to legalize it, regulate it, and tax it.

I actually don’t think we need more venues to maximize profit- in all honesty, I am a proponent of classical conservatism who feels that the abuses of unmitigated capitalism is causing global detrimental harm. It’s more that I am trying to put my mind around the concept of amoral “maximization of profit.”

Many neo-conservatives, for example, denounced Wal-Mart when it became more gay friendly. That, however, was the byproduct of Wal-Mart being a multinational corporation bent on attaining exponential profits.

But there have been exposes on countries that have legalized prostitution. Those who were too old or diseased to legally engage in prostitution just sunk to a lower status of illegal prostitute. All that seems to happen is that which was illegal becomes the norm and new low points are delved.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit